Industrial revolutions in a globalizing world, 1760–present

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Industrial production was as much part of human existence in 500 BC as it is today. The main difference is that the level of mechanization and the organization of production have changed fundamentally over time starting with the first Industrial Revolution in the 18th century. These forms of industrialization spread across the globe, beginning with Western Europe, the Western Offshoots, and Japan, and followed by the colonial commodity frontiers and finally by other countries. Factors driving this spread were cultural susceptibility, material incentives, government intervention, and the capacity to embed new technologies and organization of production in societies that were not in the world’s industrial vanguard. However, in many countries industrialization was less successful. This can be explained by the locking-in of the world economy, preventing these countries from developing capital-intensive production.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Industrial Development
EditorsPatrizio Bianchi, Sandrine Labory, Philip R. Tomlinson
Place of PublicationCheltenham (UK) and Northampton (USA)
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing Ltd.
ISBN (Electronic)978 1 80037 909 1
ISBN (Print)978 1 80037 908 4
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • industry
  • Global
  • diffusion
  • commodity frontiers
  • china
  • Great Britain


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